Bristol-Myers Squibb to develop rheumatoid arthritis drug with Alder

BOTHELL, Wash. Drug maker Bristol-Myers Squibb will work with a private biotech company to develop a biotech drug in mid-stage clinical trials for treating rheumatoid arthritis.

Bristol announced Tuesday that it had entered a partnership with Alder Biopharmaceuticals, based in the Seattle suburb of Bothell, Wash., to develop ALD518, a monoclonal antibody that has completed phase 2a testing.

Alder will grant Bristol worldwide exclusive rights to develop ALD518 for all potential disease states except cancer. Alder will retain those rights while granting Bristol the option of co-developing and commercializing the drug for cancer outside the United States. Bristol will pay Alder $85 million upfront and milestone payments that could reach nearly $1 billion, in addition to royalties. Alder may also require Bristol to invest up to $20 million in the company.

“With its novel mechanism of action, ALD518 has the potential to offer an exciting new option for patients with rheumatoid arthritis,” Bristol SVP global development and medical affairs Brian Daniels said in a statement. “We are pleased to have the opportunity to develop this novel monoclonal antibody.”

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